Footprints of the FBI
The Church of Scientology dismisses the idea it was investigated by the FBI. But former church members say FBI agents interviewed them in depth. The bureau left behind evidence of those interactions.
CLEARWATER, Dec. 4, 2009: Veteran FBI agent Tricia Whitehill interviews former church staffer Amy Scobee and gives Scobee her business card. Whitehill scribbles her email address and cellphone number on the card to make it easier for Scobee to reach her.
SEATTLE, Feb. 16, 2010: Agent Whitehill sends a Federal Express package to Scobee. She's returning Scientology magazines she borrowed from Scobee the previous December. The magazines showed pictures of Scobee while she was a church executive.
CLEARWATER, April 27, 2010: Former Scientology spokesman Mike Rinder stops by FBI offices in Clearwater. He signs papers authorizing the bureau to record conversations on his phones and place a wire on his body. He deals with Special Agent William B. Jones, who hands out his business card. Rinder is preparing for a trip to Texas, where he expects to meet defector John Brousseau and be confronted by church operatives.
LOS ANGELES, June 21, 2010: Agent Whitehill sends a text message to former church parishioner Tiziano Lugli. Whitehill identifies herself and wants to set up a time to interview him. She mentions "jb," a reference to former church staffer Brousseau, who ran away from Scientology's California headquarters that spring and was followed by church operatives.